No Swimming, Thanks to Irene

Town Posts 'No Swimming' Signs Because of Lingering Debris

0728 No Swimming Vandemere Video

VANDEMERE - It's a summer bummer at a local waterfront, but Vandemere officials put safety first by banning swimming in an area strewn with dangerous debris.

Vandemere's Town Board voted this week to post 'no swimming' signs at the First Street boat ramp. Several days ago, three children were found swimming alongside pieces of dock torn apart by Hurricane Irene. Concerned citizens spurred the Board to take action.

The Pamlico County town has plenty of other places to swim on the Bay River, but boaters and residents are frustrated wreckage is still in the water nearly a year after Irene hit.

"We've seen a lot of debris from docks that have been damaged," said Arthur Watkins, a boater who has come to Vandemere for years. "We went fishing a couple weeks after the storm, and it was noticeable then."

Pieces of dock with rusty nails lie right poke right above the water, along with crab pots floating close to shore. Two boats nearby are abandoned, one sinking into a watery grave.

No plans are in place yet to clear the area. The boat ramp remains open to the public.

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